Picture: Mike Hutchings/Reuters
The government was still pushing ahead with the unbundling of Eskom months after President Cyril Ramaphosa announced the decision.

This was confirmed by Minister in the Presidency Jackson Mthembu, who said this week that Cabinet had discussed how to turn around Eskom.

Ramaphosa has committed R250 billion to the power utility as a bailout. The president was however mum on Eskom’s unbundling in his State of the Nation Address.

Mthembu said the process to split Eskom into three entities will continue.

“All we can say is add to what the president said on Eskom, that we must within the shortest period of time craft a White Paper on what we are doing to turn around Eskom,” said Mthembu.

“We expect the White Paper to be crafted within the next three months. That was discussed at Cabinet how we are dealing with the governance aspect, the financial aspect and unbundling,” he said.

“The government will be seized with the White Paper and will inform us what we do and don’t do. We must do everything in our power so that Eskom does not fail,” said Mthembu.

Minister of Public Enterprises Pravin Gordhan also told Parliament this week that the unbundling of Eskom will continue.

The government has denied that there will be job losses at the power utility. Cosatu and other unions have warned against job losses and said they will resist any attempts to retrench workers in the restructuring of the company.

Gordhan said a chief restructuring officer will be appointed soon.

The job of the restructuring officer is to look after the operational expenditure of the power utility.

Finance Minister Tito Mboweni had said earlier that this person would follow funds at any state-owned entity given a bailout.

Political Bureau